Fostering Resiliency in School Aged Children Through Art Therapy Group Interventions

Graduation Date

Spring 2013

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Document Form


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Degree Granting Institution

Notre Dame de Namur University

Program Name

Art Therapy


John Lemmon, PhD

First Reader

Richard Carolan, EdD, ATR-BC

Second Reader

Carolee Stabno, PsyD, MFT


This study examined the usefulness of art therapy to build resiliency in children who had experienced trauma by boosting their self-esteem and reducing stress levels It was hypothesized that the use of an art therapy group for children will increase self esteem and reduce stress resulting in a greater resiliency. The population used for this study consisted of eight-school aged children a, a local elementary school in the Bay Area. An art therapy based group was implemented over five sessions. Qualitative analysis of the artwork created during the sessions revealed several themes that illustrate the usefulness of the art to provide a creative outlet for participants. Due to the small the sample size, the results of the qualitative analysis of the resiliency, self esteem and stress scores lacked measures of validity required to have a high level of confidence in the results, or to generalize the results to other populations.

Only available in print